You Can’t Handle the Truth!
We keep thinking of Jack Nicholson. “You want The Truth? You can’t handle The Truth!”
It’s the only possible justification for the secrecy that governments maintain over their citizens – that is to say, their owners, their employers, the “sovereign people”. Governments and their functionaries can only be thinking that their citizens – who are the actual authority of the State – are incapable of dealing with reality and need to be cotton-woolled, treated like mushrooms if you like, kept in the dark and fed bullshit, to play with their toys and live their fantasy lives while the powerful look after the real games like big boys, as such people have been doing since long before Macchiavelli shone his own light on their games.
Re: Wikileaks- In a free society, we are supposed to know the truth. In a society where truth becomes treason, we are in big trouble.
Daniel Ellsberg (re)tweets:
“For less than $3 you can buy a copy of the Pentagon Papers from Amazon yet they won’t host Wikileaks.”
Here’s what Hillary Clinton said on the 20th anniversary of Tiananmen Square:
A China that has made enormous progress economically, and that is emerging to take its rightful place in global leadership, should examine openly the darker events of its past and provide a public accounting of those killed, detained or missing, both to learn and to heal.
This anniversary provides an opportunity for Chinese authorities to release from prison all those still serving sentences in connection with the events surrounding June 4, 1989. We urge China to cease the harassment of participants in the demonstrations and begin dialogue with the family members of victims, including the Tiananmen Mothers. China can honor the memory of that day by moving to give the rule of law, protection of internationally-recognized human rights, and democratic development the same priority as it has given to economic reform.
But wait! There’s more! Speaking at the Newseum in January this year she said a lot of fine things about freedom of speech and the internet, and how while it was a great organ of free speech and for good in the world, there were those who were trying to stifle it.
On their own, new technologies do not take sides in the struggle for freedom and progress. But the United States does. We stand for a single internet where all of humanity has equal access to knowledge and ideas. And we recognize that the world’s information infrastructure will become what we and others make of it.
This challenge may be new, but our responsibility to help ensure the free exchange of ideas goes back to the birth of our republic. The words of the First Amendment to the Constitution are carved in 50 tons of Tennessee marble on the front of this building. And every generation of Americans has worked to protect the values etched in that stone.
[ ... ]
As I speak to you today, government censors are working furiously to erase my words from the records of history. But history itself has already condemned these tactics.
[ ... ]
As in the dictatorships of the past, governments are targeting independent thinkers who use these tools.
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Those who use the internet to recruit terrorists or distribute stolen intellectual property cannot divorce their online actions from their real world identities. But these challenges must not become an excuse for governments to systematically violate the rights and privacy of those who use the internet for peaceful political purposes.
And much, much more hypocrisy like this on the foreignpolicy.com website
Clinton should take a good hard look at herself and take a leaf from her own book.
So to help Clinton, let’s repeat Nicaraguan Interior Ministry Director of Censorship, Nelba Blandon’s, statement:
They accused us of suppressing freedom of expression. This was a lie and we could not let them publish it.
Glenn Greenwald, in his column in Salon disputes The Washington Post‘s Jonathan Capehart’s assertion that there’s nothing new here (and I apologise for reproducing the entire list but please read the whole excellent article).
If there’s Nothing New in these documents, can Jonathan Capehart (or any other “journalist” claiming this) please point to where The Washington Post previously reported on these facts, all revealed by the WikiLeaks disclosures:
(1) the U.S. military formally adopted a policy of turning a blind eye to systematic, pervasive torture and other abuses by Iraqi forces;
(2) the State Department threatened Germany not to criminally investigate the CIA’s kidnapping of one of its citizens who turned out to be completely innocent;
(3) the State Department under Bush and Obama applied continuous pressure on the Spanish Government to suppress investigations of the CIA’s torture of its citizens and the 2003 killing of a Spanish photojournalist when the U.S. military fired on the Palestine Hotel in Baghdad (see The Philadelphia Inquirer’s Will Bunch today about this: “The day Barack Obama Lied to me”);
(4) the British Government privately promised to shield Bush officials from embarrassment as part of its Iraq War “investigation”;
(5) there were at least 15,000 people killed in Iraq that were previously uncounted;
(6) “American leaders lied, knowingly, to the American public, to American troops, and to the world” about the Iraq war as it was prosecuted, a conclusion the Post’s own former Baghdad Bureau Chief wrote was proven by the WikiLeaks documents;
(7) the U.S.’s own Ambassador concluded that the July, 2009 removal of the Honduran President was illegal — a coup — but the State Department did not want to conclude that and thus ignored it until it was too late to matter;
(8) U.S. and British officials colluded to allow the U.S. to keep cluster bombs on British soil even though Britain had signed the treaty banning such weapons, and,
(9) Hillary Clinton’s State Department ordered diplomats to collect passwords, emails, and biometric data on U.N. and other foreign officials, almost certainly in violation of the Vienna Treaty of 1961.
That’s just a sampling.
The sadness of this is that it was The Washington Post that stood up so steadfastly and courageously for freedom of speech and truth, supporting Woodward and Bernstein and the independence of the Press against the secrecy and lies and machinations of Washington’s most powerful in the Watergate scandal – from which, of course, “Cablegate” inherits its name.
Meanwhile, where is GetUp on the shocking treatment by the Australian government of Assange, an Australian innocent of any Australian crime but nevertheless pre-emptively accused by both Gillard and McClelland of criminal or at least illegal activity. McClelland: “From Australia’s point of view we think there are potentially a number of criminal laws that could have been breached by …… the release of this information.”
For goodness’ sake even Rudd and John Howard agree Assange is not at fault. “Mr Rudd appears to be in agreement with former prime minister John Howard, who earlier today said Mr Assange had not done anything wrong by publishing cables that contained ‘frank commentary’.”
The Guardian has a live blog of developments which you can follow including a large amount of support for Assange and the leaking of the (previously) secret documents.
[tags]assange, wikileaks, ron paul, daniel ellsberg, glenn greenwald, Clinton, Hillary Clinton, Jack Nicholson, truth, Guardian, Washington Post, Salon, Rudd, Gillard, McClelland, John Howard, politics, diplomacy, US politics, Iraq, Iran, China Tiananmen, Australian politics, political values, internet, democracy, freedom of speech, Amazon, law, GetUp, Australian values[/tags]
Posted: 8 December, 2010 in Aussie Citizenship, Australian Politics, Australian Values, Blogging, China and Tibet, Computing, History, Internet, Iran, Iraq, legal, politics and government, Sex, US Politics, values.
Tags: Amazon, Assange, Australian Politics, Australian Values, China Tiananmen, Clinton, daniel ellsberg, democracy, diplomacy, freedom of speech, GetUp, Gillard, Glenn Greenwald, Guardian, Hillary Clinton, Internet, Iran, Iraq, Jack Nicholson, John Howard, law, McClelland, political values, politics, ron paul, Rudd, Salon, truth, US Politics, Washington Post, WikiLeaks, you can't handle the truth